Online Merchants Seeing Greater Dividends From Paid Than Organic Search Traffic
by MarketingCharts staff
The online merchants who comprise the MarketLive Performance Index are enjoying the rewards of their greater investments in paid search, according to [download page] a new MarketLive report. During the first half of this year (H1), paid search accounted for 32% of all their search visits, up from 26% during the first half of 2012. Paid search traffic continued to be more valuable than organic search traffic, with the former accounting for an outsized 44% of revenues from search.
That’s because paid search traffic converted at a higher rate than organic search traffic (2.57% and 1.9%, respectively), with a higher overall average order value ($113.00 and $109.66, respectively.) Those gaps have narrowed somewhat from last year, though: conversion rates and average order value have improved for organic traffic while dipping slightly for paid search.
Overall, search accounted for 48% of all traffic and an equal portion of all revenue for the merchants.
Separately, the study examines smartphone and tablet traffic, finding that these devices combined to account for 32.1% of visits during H1. That’s a marked 53% increase from a year earlier.
Smartphone and tablet traffic continued to have poorer conversion rates than desktops, though. The conversion rate for smartphones was just 0.59%, while for tablets it was 1.77%. (By comparison, it was 2.68% for desktops). Average order value (AOV) lagged on smartphones ($123.60), while tablets ($151.42) and desktops ($152.51) were on par. Recent data suggests that tablet owners are willing to spend more than smartphone owners when making retail purchases from their devices, although e-commerce data from Monetate has in the past found smartphone AOVs to be higher than comparable numbers for tablets.
All told, while mobile devices combined to represent almost one-third of visits in H1, they accounted for a smaller 14.5% of total revenues. Smartphones were the culprit: while accounting for 19% of visits, they brought in just 2.7% of total revenues.
Cart abandonment rates were higher on smartphones (86.3%) than tablets (77.9%) and desktops (69.8%). They averaged 72% overall, a decrease of 1.2% from last year.
Smartphone visitors spent an average of 2 minutes and 51 seconds on the merchants’ sites, compared to 4 minutes and 29 seconds for tablet visitors and 4 minutes and 12 seconds for desktop visitors.
About the Data: The MarketLive report examined H1 performance data for a subset of sites included in the index since January 1, 2012 or earlier.